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Forward DNS

(also forward DNS request, forward DNS lookup)

Forward DNS definition

A forward DNS is a Domain Name System (DNS) query from a client asking the DNS server to provide the IP address associated with a particular domain. A forward DNS request is the opposite of a reverse DNS lookup — a DNS query asking the DNS server to provide the domain name of a specific IP address.

Forward DNS requests should not be confused with the practice of DNS forwarding. DNS forwarding is the act of referring a received DNS query to another server — for example, when the receiving DNS server cannot find the corresponding IP address in its cache.

See also: DNS cache, DNS filtering, DNS flushing, DNS hijacking, DNS over HTTPS, DNS port, DNS query, DNS record, DNS redirection, DNS resolution, DNS sinkhole

How forward DNS requests work

When a user enters a domain name (for example, by typing a URL into a web browser), their device translates this input into a DNS query (the eponymous forward DNS) for an IP address. The device then sends this query to the network’s assigned DNS server, which either responds with the requisite IP address or refers the request to another DNS server.